“Hands Down” a Good Season

By Kayla Smithgall

The 2015-2016 boys’ varsity soccer team consisted of seniors Erick Krier, Hector Bocanegra, Sam Chaney, Daniel Sonnenberg and Josh Baray, juniors Brady Krier, Josh Lechman, Jacob Griebel, Jacob Breidenbach, Logan Kiefer, Brett Glissman, Dustin Quint, Ryan Ruf, Justin Gonzales and Victor Ferri, sophomores Zach Karg and Ernesto Ochoa, and freshmen Isaac Deleon and Jesus Rivera.

The team’s record this season was 5-0 in their league and 10-5 overall.

Ben Hackbarth has been coaching soccer at SHS for five years. He was an assistant coach for two years and became head coach in 2012.

When a player scores a goal, he gets two points. When he has an assist, he gets one point.

Their season began with a home game against Fort Morgan. The boys lost in overtime 3-2. Ochoa and Chaney had one goal for two points each and Kiefer had an assist for one point. B. Krier had 12 saves.

Sonnenberg has been playing for eight years. He decided to play because his siblings did. His favorite part of playing soccer is hanging out with friends.

The next week they played against Mead and won 5-0. Ochoa scored two goals, for a total of four points. Bocanegra and Chaney both scored one goal, receiving two points each. Kiefer had one goal and four assists for six points. Quint had two assists and received two points. B. Krier had four saves during the game.

“Honestly, I’m not exactly certain what drove me to continue my soccer career. Although, I love the intensity of each game, the feeling of home when I step foot on the field, and the camaraderie that my teammates and I strengthen each year. I think those are some of the strongest influences that keep me involved in soccer,” said Kiefer.

A few days later, they played North Ridge and lost in double overtime 1-0. B. Krier had 12 saves.

In Sonnenberg’s opinion, soccer is different from other sports because it involves more running. Kiefer agrees.

“An average soccer player runs seven miles each game, which is tough to do with a mix of sprinting, jogging, and speed-walking. One gets physically drained each time, but in a game which lasts almost an hour and a half with no stoppage except a halftime, you can’t get tired or lose the discipline you’ve been taught, “he said.

The boys traveled to Fort Morgan and lost 3-2. E. Krier and Lechman both scored a goal for two points and Kiefer had two assists for two points. B. Krier had seven saves.

This season, the Kriers were able to play together on varsity.

“I pick on him a lot,” said E. Krier.

“Yeah, he picks on me a lot, but I am used to it.  Overall I like playing with him, when I am working on goalie stuff he really helps and tells me what I need to do to fix it, or when I am playing on the field he is really supportive,” said B. Krier.

The Tigers then played Estes Park and won 4-1. Chaney had two goals for four points and Quint had one for two points. Bocanegra had one goal and two assists for four points and Kiefer had an assist for one point. B. Krier had eight saves.

The team had a home game against Greeley West and lost 3-1. Chaney had a goal for two points and Quint had an assist for one point. E. Krier had 12 saves during the game.

Krier’s favorite part of playing soccer is being a goalie so he doesn’t have to run very much. He has played soccer for four years. He decided to play soccer his freshman year because he didn’t want to play football.

They won their next game against Valley 8-1. Chaney had three goals and two assists for eight points. Ochoa had three goals and one assist for seven points. Quint had one goal and one assist for three points. Karg had a goal for two points, B. Krier had an assist for one point and Kiefer had two assists for two points. E. Krier had seven points.

“I’m German. I have to play soccer,” said JV player and exchange student Malte Kuessner. Kuessner enjoyed going to different places; his favorite place the team traveled to was Estes Park. His goal was to score and have fun, both of which were accomplished.

The boys defeated Community Christian 4-1. Lechman had two goals for four points and Chaney scored a goal for two points.

The Tigers were victorious against Roosevelt 8-0 at home. Chaney scored three goals for six points. Quint, Lechman and Kiefer each scored a goal for two points.  E. Krier and Griebel each had an assist for one point. Karg had two assists for two points. Ochoa had two goals and an assist for five points. E. Krier had three saves.

The team won again against Estes Park 1-0 and Frontier Academy 2-1.  At Estes, Chaney had a goal for two points and E. Krier had seven saves.

They then lost to Liberty Common 2-0.

The boys captured the win in overtime against Valley 2-1. Ochoa scored two goals for two points and Chaney had a assist for one point. E. Krier had six saves.

“The craziest thing to happen is either when our coach got a bit too passionate about explaining his belief and got ejected from a game my sophomore year or when Josh [Lechman] broke his nose with an amazing, diving header during our game at Fort Morgan this past year; there was blood gushing everywhere,” said Kiefer.

The Tigers won their next two games against Roosevelt 5-0 and Frontier Academy 1-0. At Roosevelt, Ochoa and Quint both had one goal and one assist for three points, Chaney had two goals for four points, Lechnman had two assists for two points and Kiefer scored a goal for two points. E. Krier had five saves. At Frontier, Lechman scored a goal for two points and Kiefer had an assist for one point. E. Krier had eight saves.

In the first round of playoffs, the boys lost to Peak to Peak in overtime 3-2. B. Krier and Ochoa both scored a goal for two points and Chaney has an assist for one point. E. Krier had six saves.

“My biggest goal for the season was to break some records, either as a team and/or individually. Our team as whole broke quite a few and made history for Sterling soccer, which is one of the greatest feelings to have! “said Kiefer.

As a team, the boys earned the most wins in a season (also known as the best record), the lowest goals against average in a season, the first team from Sterling to win their league, the first team to ever score in a playoff game and the most goals scored in a playoff game of two.

“To be honest we were not sure how this year’s team would perform.  We had some talent and some experience but a large number of our varsity squad from last year had graduated, and we were starting the season with some setbacks due to disciplinary suspensions.  As a coaching staff, going into the season we were worried about our lack of depth and we seemingly lacked a “game changer” who could carry the team if necessary.  Fortunately for us, our strength was not in individuals but in our team as a whole, and that made the difference,” said Hackbarth.


Hector Bocanegra #11 (12)
Hector Bocanegra (#11), Brady Krier (#26) and Jacob Griebel race down the field against Liberty Common.



Four Times & Counting: Lady Tigers Softball Go to State

By Kayla Smithgall

The 2015-2016 girls varsity softball team consisted of seniors Megan Kaiser, Lauren Szabo, Alexis Rutz-Egan, Jenna Knudson, Kylie Ross and Halee Woltemath, juniors Taylor Knudson and Aurora Prinsloo, sophomores Brooke Polenz, Cassidy Paxton, Grace Reeves, Bailey Rausch and Emory Underwood and freshman Riley Alber.

The team finished their season with  a league record of 8-3 and an overall record of 16-6.

The Lady Tigers began their season with a win against Scottsbluff 15-5. The team had a batting average of .559, 39 plate appearances (PA), 34 at bats (AB), 15 runs (R), 19 hits (H) and nine runs batted in (RBI). Kaiser, Reeves and both Knudsons each had three hits. J. Knudson had four RBIs. Szabo and J. Knudson each had a double (2B). Polenz had 11 put outs (PO). T. Knudson had a earned run average (ERA) of .175 after pitching four innings. Ross and Rutz-Egan both stole two bases.

Kaiser and Szabo have both been playing softball for 12 years; they started when they were five years old.

The girls traveled to Valley and beat the Vikings 14-4. Szabo had a sacrifice hit (SH). The team had seven base on balls (BB) and a fielding percentage of .929. Rutz-Egan had three stolen bases and Ross had an ERA of 1.00 after pitching all seven innings.

The craziest thing that happened to Szabo during the season of her final year in high school was getting hit in the face.  For Kaiser, it was falling down between first and second base when she was celebrating an inside-the-park homerun.

The team was victorious their next three games when they played and defeated Brush 15-7, Platte Valley 20-0, Lyons 11-1 at home. Against the Beetdiggers, Polenz had a home run (HR), Szabo and Woltemath both had a 2B, and Rutz-Egan had a triple (3B). Facing off against the Broncos, J. Knudson had a  HR and 2B, Szabo had two 2B and Woltemath and Kaiser both had a 2B. When the girls played the Lions, Polenz and Szabo both had a 2B and Rutz-Egan had a 3B.

In Kaiser’s opinion, softball is different from other sports because a player relies on her team more than herself and it requires more mental toughness than physical.

Szabo’s favorite memory of playing softball is being regional champions for four years. Kaiser’s favorite memory is getting to play with her best friends.

The Lady Tigers then won against Adams City 12-1 and Palisade 11-6. They went to the Berthoud Tournament and lost against Greeley West 10-9 and Berthoud 7-2.

The girls then succeeded Greeley Central 12-0. Polenz and J. Knudson had one 3B each and Szabo and Ross both had a 2B. Szabo, Rutz-Egan and Underwood all stole a base. Ross pitched an ERA of 0.00 after she pitched five innings.

Underwood has been playing for 11 years.

“One of my goals for the season was to make varsity. But most importantly I wanted to be the best I could for my team and teammates no matter the outcome of the state tournament,” she said.

Underwood feels her goal was met by everyone playing as a team and being there for each other throughout every game of the whole season.

The team was victorious over Eaton 16-5, lost to Strasburg 11-6, beat Valley 10-0 and were defeated by Brush 6-3.

The Lady Tigers captured their next four games against Platte Valley 15-0, Lyons 12-2, Eaton 10-9, and Greeley Central 24-0. Rutz-Egan got a 2B and 3B and stole two bases against the Broncos. When they faced off against the Lions, J. Knudson, Kaiser, Polenz, Szabo and Woltemath all had a FP of 1.000, leaving the team FP 1.000. Polenz, T. Knudson and Rutz-Egan all stole bases for a total of five stolen bases against the Reds. Against the Wildcats, Ross had a 2B and 3B and Woltemath had three 2B. T. Knudson pitched a 0.00 ERA in four innings.

Knudson has been playing softball for about 10 years. She decided to play at a young age because it was a sport she was able to play with her sisters. T. Knudson has played on varsity since her freshman year. This means, not only has she had her dad as a coach for three years, but she has also gotten to play with her sister for three years.

“It was such an incredible experience to play with my sister. I’ve been playing with her ever since I can remember and it was so much fun to play one more year with her. I also learned a lot having been coached by three amazing coaches not only about sports but also myself,” said Knudson.

The girls ended their regular season with a loss to Strasburg 3-0.

In districts, they won against Eaton 18-3. Woltemath had a 2B and HR and the Lady Tigers had six SB. Ross pitched a 7.00 ERA in three innings and Rutz-Egan pitched a 0.00 ERA in one inning.

“The craziest thing that happened this season was during state. We all went out to Texas Roadhouse to eat dinner and we told our waitress it was Coach Kilmer’s birthday. We sang to her and she was on the saddle and she played along very well!” said Underwood.

In the first round of state, the team beat Lamar 12-5. After playing eight innings, the girls lost in the second round of state to Eaton 6-5.

“I coach softball because it is a great game and I have been able to be around some incredible ladies these last four years who really wanted to learn and get better.We had a sensational year and the run was incredible,” said coach Bob Knudson.


The Lady Tigers huddle together during their game against Brush.





Going the Distance Together

By Kayla Smithgall

Runners for the 2015 cross country team included seniors Isaac Bernatchez, Cayla Carey, Katelyn Pyle, Jasmine Fuyivara, Christopher Lock, Abe Arguello, Zack Benson, Brenden Gunwall, Neil Lovell, Emily Rutherford and Rayna Medeles, juniors Kylee Harless, Payton Swedlund, McKenna Christner and Noah Lemily, sophomores Alex Kalan, Jacob Schroeder, Rebecca Miller, Rachael Northup and Sydney Wright, and freshmen Brianna Wilson, Joey Coakley, Adam Hernandez, and Ryan Lock.

Cheryl Rael has coached cross country for 24 years.

“I became a coach because I love running, discipline and conditioning,” she said.

The runners participated in 10 races throughout their cross country season.

The first race was at home. The girls placed 6/7 with a score of 93 and the boys placed 6/8 with a score of 77.

Their second race was at Frontier Academy. The boys beat two teams again, placing 18/20 with a score of 494. The girls placed 14/14 with a score of 392. There, Swedlund ran her best time of 25:13, placing 108/130.

The Tigers’ next stop was Platte Valley. The girls’ team beat four teams, placing 7/11 with a score of 183. The boys beat three teams, placing 10/13 with a score of 257. Rutherford ran her personal best of 25:25 on JV at this meet.

The fourth race was called Runners Roost. The boys beat 11 teams and placed 16/27 with a score of 421, while the girls beat seven teams and placed 14/21 with a score of 375.

“There was a fun run in Littleton [Runners Roost] and these guys dressed up in togas and ran the course. There were also guys dressed as vikings. At the meet there were rivers that everyone had to either jump over or run through and it was funny to watch people miss and fall into the water. I did not fall in; I cleared all of them,” said Harless.

The team then traveled to Frontier Academy again, with the boys placing 14/15 with a score of 339 and the girls placing 12/12 with a score of 271.

With a score of 398, the girls placed 13/14 at Dakota Ridge. The boys placed 13/20 with a score of 375.

At Andy Meyers, the girls’ varsity placed 11/12  and JV placed 4/4 with a score of 396 and the boys’ varsity placed 11/14 and JV placed 6/6 with a score of 306.There were five runners who ran their best time there. Coakley ran 19:22 and placed 56/103. Pyle ran 25:23.97 and placed 88/102,  Fuyivara ran a 28:43 and placed 32/48 on JV, McKenna Christner ran a 28:43 and placed 36/48 on JV too. Schroeder also ran on JV, placing 42/43 with a time of 30:18.

” I have always been into physical fitness and since my oldest sister Kim ran cross county, she gave me the idea. I thought it would be a great way to exercise. When I first started I was barely able to complete a three mile/5K and now I can run seven miles and do a three mile run in 20 minutes. Cross county takes patience and knowing your body. If you don’t push yourself to the best you can be, you will not improve,” said Coakley.

The runners’ seventh race was their Patriot League race in Kersey, CO. The girls placed 6/7 with a score of 171. The boys placed 7/9 with a score of 186. Seven runners beat their personal records there. Ryan Lock ran a 26:42 and placed 90/97, Alex Kalan ran a 20:50 and placed 60/97, Abe Arguello ran a 20:58 and placed75/97, Zack Benson ran a 34:37 and placed 97/97,Brenden Gunwall ran a 20:57 and placed 73/97, Chris Lock ran a 20:58 and placed 79/97 and Rebecca Miller ran a 24:33 and placed 44/74.

“My favorite part of cross country is really the team. We are like a family! That sounds a little cliche but we are truly almost as close as family. We sometimes run an extra mile just to encourage each other. And at team dinners (before each race) we spend hours just hanging out and having fun,” said Miller.

The next run was only a two mile run at University. The boys scored 195 and placed 8/13 while the girls scored 140 and placed 5/8.

” My favorite memory is team dinners at Chris Lock’s house. We had larping wars, played big genga and had amazing pizza lasagna,” said Harless.

Bernatchez agreed with Harless about team dinners.

“My favorite memory isn’t only just one memory, rather a bunch of memories. As a team we will throw small team dinners at each other’s homes the day before the race. At every one there is always one thing that I will remember the most. No matter if it was us playing football in the streets or even playing games such a giant jenga with everyone standing around as intense concentration was being show on the participators’ faces,” he said.

After University, the team traveled to Monfort Park in Greeley for Regionals. The girls placed 8/11 with a score of 226 and the boys placed 7/12 with a score of 243. 10 runners ran their fastest times there.  Hernandez ran a 20:30 and placed 66/103 , Bernatchez ran a 17:25 and placed 13/103, Lemily ran a 25:57 and placed 102/103 and Lovell ran a 19:54 and placed 61/103. Wilson ran a 22:39 and placed 30/91, Northup ran a 22:39 and placed 31/91, Wright ran a 25:45:00 and placed 69/91, Harless ran a 25:54 and placed 70/91, Carey ran a 25:54:00 and placed 71/91 and Medeles ran a 26:03 and placed 72/91.

“By far the craziest thing that happened this year was when I lent my pocket knife to Alex to remove a zip tie holding his chip on. He accidentally cut himself through his shoe and cut his toe. He was then taken to the ER and got nine stitches,” said Coakley.

There was one person that actually ran 11 races in his final season of cross country. That person is Bernatchez. He has ran cross country all four years of high school, and each year he qualified for state. This year at state, Bernatchez placed 54 out of 150 runners with a time of 18:13.

“To go to state all four years is a great achievement no matter who you are or what sport you play. To put on a college application “I have attended state cross country for all four years of my high school career” is a good feeling. Even the option to say “I did it, I ran the hardest course of my cross country career, and I crossed the finish line every time,” makes me feel extremely proud of myself,” he said.


“The best part of being a coach is seeing athletes improve, work hard daily and bond together. The kids set high standards for themselves so it’s no suprise when they perform better; I expect it,” said Rael.


Isaac Bernatchez (12)
Isaac Bernatchez races to beat his opponent to the finish line.

Lady Tigers Dig to State

By Kinzi Kaiser

The SHS volleyball team ended with 13 wins and 14 losses for this season. The Tigers finished at state in the top 12.

The team made it to state by winning against Vanguard and Middle Park at regionals on November 6. At state, the team lost to both University and Manitou Springs.

“Our team obviously grew during the season. Our team was very young this year, so we started with little experience. Others did not have high expectations of us for this season, but we grew strong enough to finish it at state,” said Head Coach Lisa Schumacher.

“The season was definitely tough. The best part about this season for me was being able to end my senior year with the girls it all started with. We didn’t have the height but we had the spirit,” said senior Josie Blagg.

Varsity players for the 2015 season were seniors Josie Blagg, Sierra Fleharty, Tayler Shino and Khalie Tidemann. Juniors were Kylie Chavez and Jessica Holloway. Sophomores were Kyndall Feather, Lauryn Luft, Peyton Huss, Kinzie Davis, Gracie Bacon and Kirstyn Fritzler. Freshmen were Sadie Holloway and Trennary Cartwright.

For kills this season, Chavez (229), Feather (118), Luft (113), Blagg (73), Tidemann (71), Davis (69), Shino (21), Fritzler (7), Cartwright (5), Bacon (2) and Fleharty (1).

Serving aces for the season were Feather (73), Tidemann (29), Fleharty (27), Blagg (26), Chavez (23), Luft (14), Shino (13), J. Holloway (2), Davis (2) and S. Holloway (1).

Total blocks for the season were Luft (74), Chavez (42), Tidemann (42), Blagg (40), Davis (30), Feather (29) and Shino (8).

Digs for the season were Shino (341), Feather (338), Fleharty (306), Chavez (281), Blagg (183), Tidemann (82), Luft (64), J. Holloway (57), Davis (30), S. Holloway (11), Fritzler (5) and Cartwright (3).

Assists for the season were Feather (383), J. Holloway (66), Chavez (59), Blagg (22), Luft (11), Davis (9) and Tidemann (3).

Serving received successes for the season were Shino (360), Fleharty (323), Blagg (247), Chavez (195), Feather (171), Tidemann (26), S. Holloway (26), J. Holloway (19), Davis (11), Luft (9), Fritzler (2), and Bacon (1).

“This year was good, and I feel like everyone did their best and gave it their all to accomplish what we did. We had ups and downs, but we were always a team. Anything we did this season we did as a team; all the wins were won together, and we fought together through all the losses. I’m proud of how well we did this year and all we accomplished,” said Chavez.

“I think we really have come far from where we started. We were young and have really stepped it up since the beginning of the season. I can’t wait to see how far we can go in the future,” said J. Holloway.


Coach Schumacher encourages the girls during a timeout.

Chicken Whip Dougie Shake Crank

By Brynn Abernathy, Amber Antinora, Gracie Bacon, Kirsten Hernandez

Sterling High School Reacts to Popular Dance Fads

It seems there is always a popular song that fuels a new dance craze. Often these dances takeover social media, appear time and time again on television, and cannot be avoided when scanning through local radio stations. The artists behind these songs also experience jumpstarts in their careers and obtain huge chart and sales success. They may even become household names as a result. Some of these dances that have taken the world by storm include the “Chicken Dance”, “Crank That (Soulja Boy)”, “Teach Me How To Dougie”, “Harlem Shake”, and most recently, “Watch Me (Whip/ Nae Nae).”

In a short survey, SHS students were asked what their favorite and least favorite song to dance to is. The survey consisted of five popular songs: “Harlem Shake”, “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)”, the “Chicken Dance”, “Teach Me How To Dougie”, and Crank That (Soulja Boy).” The freshman class’s favorite song to dance to was the “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae).” Their least favorite was a tie between the “Chicken Dance” and “Harlem Shake.” The sophomore class agreed with the freshman class. Their favorite song to dance to was “Watch Me (Whip/ Nae Nae)” and their the most unfavored was the “Chicken Dance.” Unlike the underclassmen, the junior class’s preference of song to dance to is the “Chicken Dance.” Their least preferred song choice to dance to is “Harlem Shake.” Along with the juniors, the seniors’ number one song choice to dance to is also the “Chicken Dance.” The most unfavored song according to the senior class is “Teach Me How To Dougie.” A recent survey showed that Sterling High School students’ overall favorite dance to do is “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae).” The least favorite dance is “Crank That (Soulja Boy).”

For more understanding on the answers given by each class, the Bengal Cry staff interviewed four people from each grade level. Along with each class, staff members were interviewed for their input.

Freshman Riley Bacon stated, “My favorite song is “Harlem Shake” because it is fun to do. My least favorite would probably be the “Chicken Dance” because it is stupid. I think these songs are so popular because you can dance to them.”

For freshman Sadie Holloway, her choice of song to dance to is the “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae).”

“My favorite song would probably be the “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” because it is a fun upbeat song to dance to. I am not too fond of “Teach Me How To Dougie” because it is boring. These songs are popular because everybody knows them.” she said.

According to Isaac Harris, his most favored song out of the five songs is “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae).”

“My most liked song would probably be “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” because it is a catchy song and a fun dance to take part in. My least favorite dance would be the “Chicken Dance” because all you do is act like a chicken. These songs are so popular because they have a catchy rhythm and are easy to follow.” he said.

The last of the freshman class, Makenna Perry, stated her opinion, “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” is my favorite because it is funny to do and funny to watch. I don’t like the “Chicken Dance” because it is random and boring. I believe that these songs are so popular today because of the music influences and people want to fit in.”

Sophomore Finnin Hayes expressed his thoughts on the five popular songs.

“My favorite song has got to be “Teach Me How To Dougie” because of the fun body movement. My least favorite is the “Chicken Dance” because it is stupid. These songs are popular because of the catchy rhythm and they are fun to do.” he said.

Kirstyn Fritzler stated, “My favorite song is “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” because it is fun to dance to. My least favorite sing is by far the “Chicken Dance” because it is dumb. These songs are probably so popular because they are fun to do.”

Brandon Locke agreed with Kirstyn Fritzler’s dislike of the “Chicken Dance.”

“My favorite song is “Harlem Shake” because it is random and different. My least favorite song is the “Chicken Dance” because it is not fun. I think these songs are popular because that are catchy and have a certain beat to them.” he said.

For Sydney Wright, her most preferred song is the “Chicken Dance.”

“My favorite song is the “Chicken Dance’ because it is fun to do and it is easy. My least favorite is “Harlem Shake” because it hurts. These songs are so popular to us because generally the student body likes the beat and rhythm the songs have to offer.” she said.

Despite the age difference between the lower and upperclassmen, their taste in music is almost the same. Junior Evan Kapps expressed his perspective on the five songs.

“My favorite song is “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” because it is catchy and fun to dance to. My least favorite is the “Chicken Dance” because it is boring and stupid. I think these songs are so popular because at one point they were all played on the radio and they have some specific type of rhythm.” he said.

Unlike Kapps, Brady Krier pronounced that his most-liked was the “Chicken Dance.” “My favorite song is the “Chicken Dance” because it is a classic. My least favorite is “Harlem Shake” because it is stupid.” Krier, a man of few words, stated his opinion on why they are so popular with “they just are.”

Jessica Holloway shares a most favored song with many other students.

“My favorite song would be “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” because it is fun to dance to and has a catchy rhythm. My least favorite song would be “Teach Me How To Dougie” because it is annoying and boring. I think these songs are so popular because they are all somewhat new, besides the “Chicken Dance”, and they are all fun to dance to.” she said.

“My favorite would probably have to be the “Teach Me How To Dougie” because it is fun and funny to watch,” revealed Kylie Chavez. “My least favorite would have to be “Harlem Shake” because it is stupid. I think these songs are so popular because they are easy to do,” she continued.

Senior Khalie Tidemann stated her opinion about two of the five songs.

“My favorite song is “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” because that is the dance I do most of the time. My least favorite is the “Chicken Dance” because it is hard to get into. I think these songs are so popular because they appeal to teenagers around the world.” she said.

Jason Ha said, “My favorite song is the “Chicken Dance” because when I was a kid, I danced to it all the time. My least favorite would be “Harlem Shake” because it is random and weird. These songs are probably so popular because they are family friendly songs and are also very catchy.”

Josie Blagg stated, “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” is my favorite because it is on all the time at practice and get me moving. My least favorite, I would say is the “Chicken Dance” because it is really repetitive. I think these songs are so popular because everyone can sing along, dance to and just have a great time all together!”

According to Zane Powell, “My favorite has got to be the “Chicken Dance” because who in their right mind wouldn’t like it. My least favorite is probably “Teach Me How To Dougie” because I don’t know how to do it. I think they are so popular because they are just go to dance songs.”

Librarian Becky Fritzler said, “My favorite song it “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” because it is upbeat and entertaining. My least favorite song would be the “Chicken Dance” because it is childish and boring. I think these songs are so popular because they are upbeat, fun and enjoyable.”

Art teacher Chelsea Scott had a different opinion on the song choices.

She said, “My favorite song is “Harlem Shake” because it is fun. My least favorite song is “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” because it is silly. I think these songs are so popular because they are easy to dance to.”

Khalie Cropped
Senior Khalie Tidemann dances the “Whip” in the school hallway. Tidemann gladly demonstrated the dance for the camera.


Edinger Cropped
Science teacher Aaron Edinger dances the “Whip” during his second hour class.


With a popular dance fad generally comes success for the song and artist behind the dance. The most recent dance fad is to the song “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” by the rapper Silento. The hit is currently number one on Billboard’s Rap Streaming Songs Chart, and peaked at number one on the Hot Rap Songs Chart on Aug. 8, 2015, after spending 22 weeks on the chart. It also reached number three on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart on July 18, 2015 after being released on May 6, 2015 by Capitol Records.


Scott Cropped
Art teacher Chelsea Scott takes a break from ceramics to do the “Harlem Shake.” Scott demonstrated the dance all while holding her clay.

Artist Baauer’s 2013 hit “Harlem Shake”, was released in January of 2013 by Mad Decent Records. It spent 19 weeks on Billboard’s Hot 100 Chart before reaching the number one spot on March 2, 2013. “Harlem Shake” also hit number one on the Hot Dance/Electronic Songs Chart on March 2, 2013 after only two weeks on the chart.


Finnin Cropped
Sophomore Finnin Hayes demonstrates the “Dougie” during an interview. Junior Nick Jones looked on as Hayes performed the dance, while he wore an appropriate hat.

The 2010 hit “Teach Me How To Dougie” by Cali Swag District reached number 28 on Billboard’s Hot 100 Chart on September 4, 2010 after spending twenty weeks on the chart. It also peaked at number nine on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs Chart on July 24, 2010 before the full album was released on July 12, 2011 by 319 Music Group.


Squier Cropped
Athletic Director Jeff Squier dances to “Crank That (Soulja Boy).” Squier stepped out of his class into the hallway to demonstrate the dance for the camera.

“Crank That (Soulja Boy)” by Soulja Boy Tell ‘Em topped Billboard’s Hot 100 Songs Chart at number one on October 6, 2007 spending 32 weeks on the chart. It also reached number one on the Hot Rap Songs Chart on September 29, 2007 before its full album release on October 2, 2007 from Collifark Music/Interscope Records.


Think of the first time you heard or danced to the “Chicken Dance” or “Teach Me How To Dougie”, or “Crank That (Soulja Boy).” How about watched a video of “Harlem Shake?” More recently, it is the impossible to go a day without hearing about “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae).” So where did they all come from? Some of them are older than you think.

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Athletic Secretary Sandy Weigel, Attendance Secretary Lori Thompson and High School Nurse Cindy Smith preform the “Chicken Dance” in the office.

Although there is no Billboard charting history available for the Chicken Dance, it actually originated in Switzerland in the 1950s. The dance was popularized by YouTube user GODHELLY in 2009. “The Chicken Dance Song” now has close to 17 million views. Though it is the oldest of all the sampled dances, it has the least views and social media attention.


Second, “Harlem Shake”, uploaded to YouTube as just a song by the artist Baauer in 2013, has 29 million views. Although many stars did it like the Backstreeet Boys, Jimmy Fallon, and colleges like Washington State, Oregon State, Colorado State and practically every college with internet access. Not only that, the Fine Bros., famous YouTubers, uploaded a Kids React To The Harlem Shake video which has 32 million views. So many people know of the dance although it is rarely heard of nowadays.

Next, “Teach Me How To Dougie” by Cali Swag District. The original video uploaded in 2010, (currently at 32 million views) features the premade dance moves. Many people have made their own tutorial on how to do the dance. One video even has 10 million views. But even a collective 42 million views is nothing compared to “Crank That (Soulja Boy)” at 199 million views. The song was released in 2007, but the video with the dance was released in 2009. It has been featured in the video game Dance Central also.

Dominating them all, is the most popular dance of 2015, “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae).” The song by Silento has 373 million (and counting) views. The song includes seven dance moves, some of which were already established. A countless number of Vines featuring this song are seen daily by all different types of people. One reason this could be is the popularity of social media; Twitter having 370 million monthly users, Instagram with 300 million and Vine with 200 million monthly users.

Everyone has a favorite dance craze they enjoy dancing along with. Dance fads are very prominent in today’s pop culture. Some of these fads include “Chicken Dance”, “Crank That (Soulja Boy)”, “Teach Me How To Dougie”, “Harlem Shake”, and “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae).” Now with the increased presence of social media, these trends become phenomenons in an even wider scale in an even shorter amount of time. As the newest dance craze begins to wind down, there is no doubt, that another will soon come along and capture the world’s attention, and the chain of popular dances will continue to grow.

Teacher of November

By Katlyn LaPorte

The teacher of the month for November is Rachelle Knudson. This is Knudson’s first year teaching at the high school.

Knudson was born on April 13, 1994. Her family consists of her mom, Carrie, her dad Bob, her two younger sisters, Jenna and Taylor, and her dog Coco. Her mom also teaches at the high school and both her sisters attend.

Knudson attended Regis University for three years, and played softball there all three.

Knudson teaches pre-calc, Algebra two, and Keytrain math. She loves teaching math because it is her favorite subject.

Knudson’s favorite hobby is coaching softball alongside her dad.

“I want to keep teaching and coaching and eventually have kids,” said Knudson.

In ten years she sees herself still teaching at the high school.

Although Knudson is a math teacher, her all-time favorite class she even took was education disparity and injustice in college. Her favorite movie is Baby Mama and her favorite book is If I Forget You Remember. One of her favorite memories is winning the RMAC Conference with her college softball team, and making it to regionals.

Knudson’s role model is her mother, Carrie.

“I really like having both my sisters at the school. It’s cool having my oldest sister teach my class. It’s also nice being able to all share cars when we need to because we’re all at the same place,” said Taylor, the youngest sister.


Rachelle Knudson
Knudson helps sophomore Luke Jensen with a problem.


The Whole 1,877 Yards: Tiger Football in Review

By Sydney Goldenstein

As the 2015 football regular season comes to an end and the boys move on to the state tournament, each player finishes with what they started.

“What makes up this year’s team is how well they play together, their good sense of teamwork and being unselfish,” said head coach Rob Busmente.

The Tigers kicked the season off with a 26-7 win in the game against Elizabeth. The team had a total of 266 rushing yards, with 105 credited to quarterback, said senior Michael Mitchek.

Sterling fell 46-6 to the Mead Mavericks in the second game of the season. Senior Brennan Skerjanec scored the Tigers’ only touchdown that game.

Fans left Tiger Stadium satisfied after the game against Strasburg with the 26-18 win. The win improved Sterling’s record to 2-1 on the season.

The Tigers routed the host, Wray Eagles, 42-6 in their second away game. Juniors Braedon Kloberdanz, Austin Chavez, Austin Burkholder, Mike Chavez, sophomore Christian Rose, and freshman Isaac Harris each contributed to the win with one touchdown each, with the exception of kicker M. Chavez, who also had a total of six kick points.

In the Homecoming game vs. University, the Tigers dominated the Bulldogs 47-7, a huge game for Sterling. Senior Michael Mitchek and junior Austin Burkholder both had three touchdowns (TD), and junior Tyler Graber had one TD. Kicker M. Chavez contributed five kick points to the score. Running back Austin Burkholder had a total of 230 rushing yards this game, only 40 yards short of breaking the school record from ’95.

“I felt good knowing that I had 186 yards at halftime,” said Burkholder. “In that back of my mind I knew I could have had the record, but I didn’t have the chance to play most of the second half since we were winning by so much. I was kind of disappointed knowing that if I had played the whole game, I could’ve broken it by a lot.”

“My favorite game of the whole season was against University because we stomped them,” said A. Chavez, Sterling’s receiver and cornerback.

The Tigers next took on the Vikings at Valley’s stadium, leaving with a 23-13 win. Michael Mitchek was credited with 12 total points, Isaac Harris with 6 points, and M. Chavez with three.

After having a bye-week, Sterling took on the Eaton Red’s. The Tigers went home with a close 18-17 win. With 30 seconds left in the game, senior quarterback Michael Mitchek connected with freshman wide receiver Isaac Harris on a 23-yard pass and lifted Sterling over Eaton by one point.

In the rivalry game against Brush, Sterling came out on top 41-13. Freshman Isaac Harris and junior A. Chavez each had one touchdown, and junior Austin Burkholder had four, giving the team 24 points total and putting him one touchdown off from breaking the school’s record of five TD’s in a game.

In the last regular season game against Platte Valley, the Tigers fell short to the Bronco’s 35-21. Junior’s Austin Burkholder, A. Chavez and M. Chavez each scored one TD.

The Tigers finished the regular season with a 7-2 record, awarding them the 5th seed in the 2A football playoffs.

“From the beginning to now, I think we just became a team and the chemistry finally came together with everyone,” said Mitchek.

The Tiger’s started their post season on a positive note in their first playoff game against Faith Christian. Sterling fell short in the first half 0-7, but came back in the third and fourth quarter to win it all. Senior Jake Busmente, Isaac Harris, and A. Chavez each had one TD and Austin Burkholder with two, putting the Tigers 35-7 in the end. This was the first playoff game the Tigers have won in eight years.

The win against Faith Christian sent the Sterling Tigers into the second round of playoffs against the La Junta Tigers. Sterling fell short to La Junta 13-34, bringing an end to their season.

“The team’s strengths include their overall character and resilience,” said Coach Aaron Edinger. “Their only weakness is starting slow in the first half, but that’s where the resilience ties in.

Coach Busmente agreed, adding that their mental toughness and growth as players improved throughout the season.

Overall, the team had an 8-3 record in their seasons, having the most wins in a season since 2007.


Mike Chavez (#9), Braedon Kloberdanz (13), Brennan Skerjanec (#12) and Michael Mitchek (#4) prepare to take on Faith Christian.

Photo taken by Sydney Goldenstein



Moves on the Mat: Tigers Cheerleading Review

By Katlyn LaPorte

This year’s Tigers cheer season kicked off on the first day of summer when the cheerleaders kicked it into gear for morning practices. The girls practice every weekday morning of the summer for the whole summer, at six o’clock a.m. These practices are for the new cheerleaders to learn cheers, dances, and how to stunt, and for the whole team to put together a routine to perform at Homecoming.

On July 20, the cheer squad hired a choreographer, Amanda Krause, from Denver to come to Sterling and teach them a whole routine to perform at regionals and state. The girls practiced endlessly, finishing out summer morning practice and moving into after school practices.

The 2015 homecoming game fell on Oct. 2, and the girls performed their full routine in front of the whole entire staff and student body for the first time. After the performance the girls were so ecstatic that everything hit to where there were tears in their eyes; but this was not the end of this routine for them, only the beginning.

To this day the cheerleaders practice hard every single day after school so they are well prepared and looking fantastic for their regional cheer competition on Nov. 20, and their state cheer competition on Dec. 11 and 12.

The routine is advanced. It consists of many advanced stunts, dances, and jumps that have to be completely perfected to really “wow” the judges.

The squad will continue to work every day until their competition dates so their routine is flawless.

Getting to know this year’s squad; they consist of five seniors; Mileena Borges, Amber Finlayson, Ashli Hellman, Cyntera May, and Brittany Wright, four juniors; Kelsey Adams, Yadira Galvan, Katlyn LaPorte, and Carlie Rosa, two sophomores; Kayla Albright and Halie Cure, and five freshman; Danessa Allen, Ashby Hux, Haley Kerr, Emory Lesh, and Ciara Thompson.

For seniors Hellman and Finlayson it will be their fourth year on the cheer squad.

“This season is going great, there have been some bumps in the road along the way but it is nothing we can’t handle,” said Hellman.

“I think we will do really well this year at our competitions because we have all worked really hard and stayed dedicated and when competition time comes all our hard work will pay off,” said Finlayson.

“The hardest part about cheer is the fact that it ends. The bonds, games, competitions, summer practices, the relationships all coming to an end is the hardest part. I don’t know how I am going to make it through the day without my girls, without hearing about their drama or seeing their smiley faces in the hall. They really are what get me through everything,” said Hellman.

“The thing I will miss the most is the connection I have with all the girls and how much each and every one of them formed me into who I am today. I will miss all of our laughs and team nights,” said Finlayson.

Hellman’s and Finlayson’s all-time favorite cheer memories are both going to Elitches with the squad and team nights because that is when they all bonded the most.

The head coach for the cheer squad is Jolene Maul. Maul puts everything she has into her cheer squad and has for many years.

“This year’s returning members have been really good mentors for the new girls. They have really impressed upon them the importance of keeping our tradition of being completely dedicated to the sport of cheer,” said Maul. “If our homecoming performance was any indication, we should do a good job in our competitions, hopefully improving with each one.”

Maul also wants to thank the student body for all their support of the cheerleaders.

The cheerleaders will continue to put in hard-work and dedication up until the time of their competitions.

The SHS Cheer Squad prepares to cheer the Lady Tigers volleyball team on to victory.



November’s Tiger of the Month

By Sydney Goldenstein

Brennan Skerjanec

The male athlete of the month for November is senior Brennan Skerjanec.

Skerjanec was born on January 1st. His parents are Joe and Marybeth, and he has three brothers; Stanton, James and Liam.

Skerjanec has maintained a 4.0 GPA throughout high school. His favorite subject is math because he “is good at it.”

On the football field, Skerjanec is number 12. He plays wide receiver and safety.

“The best thing about football is winning as a team. The worst is losing,” said Skerjanec.

His favorite memory in football is picking off quarterbacks with Austin Chavez.

Skerjanec’s goal for high school is to take state in football.

“Not only is it my goal, but it’s a team goal to win state,” said Skerjanec.

Skerjanec’s pre-game ritual is to eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

His biggest supporter is his grandmother.

“She’s my biggest supporter because she always takes my side, no matter what happens in the game,” said Skerjanec.

His biggest confidence boost is his teammates.

Skerjanec’s advice to underclassmen and JV players is to never be afraid to ask questions.

“Shout out to dirty Mike and the boys,” said Skerjanec.

Skerjanec also plays basketball. He is number is 34 on the court and is a forward.

Some of his favorite things include the book Eleven Rings by Phil Jackson, the movie Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, the T.V. show Breaking Bad, football, breakfast foods and his favorite “athlete” is Jackie Moon from the movie Semi-Pro.

Skerjanec’s hobbies include playing disc golf and other sports.

His biggest role model is his father.

“My dad has the character and integrity I want to have when I become a father,” said Skerjanec.

His biggest inspiration is small town kids who turned into college athlete.

Skerjanec’s favorite high school memory is when he went to state FBLA his sophomore year.

His college plans include signing to play “competitive under-water basket weaving at Ball-so-hard University.”


Ethan’s Ethereal Ether

By Ethan Robinson

America, Greatest Country in the World?

The United States of America is, comparatively, a great country. There is a reason why refugees throughout the world see the US as salvation. There is a reason why numerous societies seeking freedom have looked to the US as an encouraging success story.

Whether relying on truth or falsehood, millions of immigrants have come to the US seeking a better life. Each case is different, being anything from opportunity in immigration, to sheer survival, as is the case for refugees. To them, the US is either a vastly superior nation, or a lesser evil compared to their own homes.

So please! Let us celebrate and revel in the fact that we are a nation of immigrants. As you eat your turkey and spend swell time with family this Thanksgiving, enjoy the fact that we are a diverse country.

But among the awkward conversations that come with all visits with family, there is one saying that I will not find agreement in.

“America is the greatest country in the world!”

Greatest country? In what world? There are 188 recognized and unique nations in the world, and we’re supposed to believe that the United States of America is simply the best out of every single one?

I understand that patriotism and pride is as American as apple pie. It forms the basis of our country and values. And sure, we are rich, and the average American lives a life to what we perceive as comfort and “freedom”.

But let me start by saying that there is nothing wrong with being proud of your country. Pride can lead to improvement, sustaining rights and recognizing new ones. Constant development and metamorphosis is what a democratic system is all about. But should American pride necessarily extend to calling ourselves the greatest compared to the rest of the world?

I do not think so. Germany has freedom, the UK has freedom, Japan has freedom, Zimbabwe has freedom, even “communist” China has what many perceive as freedom. Freedom is a very loose and malleable term, and it never has the same definition everywhere at once.

This aspect of freedom is why our founding fathers had such a strenuous time outlining freedom in our country’s formation and why we still have debates on it today. Thusly, I believe it to be arrogance that we can think of ourselves as the greatest without considering the other 188 nations in the world and their own ethos of governance.

Another thing I hear is this “special something” that America has which the rest of the world does not have, and that they are just vying to get that “special something” in all their jealousy. But what “special something” is this in terms with the modern world? Is it the fact that we make up 40% of the global military expenditure, China at 8% and Russia at 4%, and we still fear for our lives and American freedoms? Is it the fact that we are the highest in homicide rates compared to the richest countries? Is it the fact that we have the highest debt to gdp ratio out of the five richest countries, second out of the most populous behind Japan? In terms of academics in science, reading, and math, we lead globally in none of them, ranking averagely in reading and science, and low in math. What’s more, the US has the second-highest childhood poverty ranking in the richest countries, surpassed only by Mexico. So what is this “special something”? What I want is facts, because I cannot see them anywhere for this assertion that we are the best or have some sort of secret to success. Why should we call ourselves the greatest country in the world if these staggering problems still keep us negatively on the charts of statistical fact?

Furthermore, there is one other aspect that I cannot find logic in. There is a reason why nationalism is a synonym for patriotism in the English dictionary. Patriotism, if aggravated and led to an extreme view, is practically nationalism. And in my eyes, having vigorous support for your country leads to division in the world. Division leads to conflict, and conflict leads to suffering, along with inevitable innocent deaths. In other words, war.

This is why humanity has always had kingdoms and borders and countless clashes. Having a total belief in your own country means you are more willing to advocate its survival than others. If everyone believes they are superior and are out for their own skin, how can peace ever be possible for anyone?

The United States must place more stock in open-mindedness, and not keep its values confined in the American home. Because, when it comes down to it, humanity will not get anywhere close to the peace advocated through religion and for our families if we continue to draw lines between ourselves and grow to look down upon, or even hate, our neighbors.

Think about the greatest advances of the world, from landing on the Moon, American independence and other social movements, the printing press, the airplane, the internet, all discoveries in math and science, to great literary works with beneficial ideas. Many of those sparks may have been ignited by one sole individual mind, but it was because of human cooperation and open-mindedness that the innovations took flame and actually benefitted society. We as people actually make life better by working together, not by scorning each other. Extreme patriotism, or nationalism, decreases open-mindedness for others outside a certain demographic, and thus lessens the progression for future innovations and discovery.

I am a pacifist, and as a former resident of Japan and student at Hokkaido International School, I have been exposed to a varying and vivid number of worldly perspectives. And out of all the people I met from Europe, to the Middle-East, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific isles beyond, almost all had one thing in common, an open kindness. It was a curiosity, and respect for everyone and everything they came upon. They did not look upon differences with scorn, they accepted it with wonder and interest. They judged people not solely based on their country of birth but by their character. And that is what I believe in. Not extreme patriotism, division, conflict, or war. What I believe in is a patriotism dedicated to doing the right thing, that we can believe in humanity, in the world as a whole.

For the very reason why my teachers, peers, and acquaintances in Japan, and in HIS, chose to leave their own countries, was because of an urge to discover or learn more of others abroad. In a sense, they each brought their own homelands with them and used that background to influence foreign lives for the better, while they mutually benefitted from the international experience. If we are taught from as early as kindergarten to be individuals who can treat others with equal respect as people, then why can’t we do so as a country?

So, if we truly want to be patriotic, I believe we must try to spread our love for freedom and rights in the form of understanding, and always be aware of the rest of the world and be willing to learn from other countries and help them, using peace as our sole action. That is patriotism.

The United States is not the center of the Earth, the United States is not the greatest, the United States is not humanity. We are humanity, and we should always think of ourselves as so.